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Skydance Reveals ‘New Paramount’ Vision Ahead of Merger Finalization

David Ellison, who will be named Chairman-CEO if the deal goes through, stressed that moving forward, the company will be a ‘confluence of art, first and foremost, working hand in hand with technology.’

While Skydance’s tentative agreement to acquire Paramount Global will not be finalized until a review by Paramount’s special committee of its board of directors and a vote of Class A shareholders, Skydance founder David Ellison has already come forward to reveal his vision for the ‘New Paramount.’

Ellison, who will be named Chairman-CEO if the deal is finalized, met with the press Monday morning alongside potential President of Paramount Jeff Shell and head of RedBird Capital Gerry Cardinale to address investors and Skydance’s plans moving forward.

Ellison stressed that the New Paramount will be a “confluence of art, first and foremost, working hand in hand with technology.”

Speaking less broadly, Shell added, “If there’s going to be a change for CBS, we’re going to probably manage it a bit more aggressively for cash flow. Meaning making some harder decisions on time periods going forward, which you have to when you have a declining business.”

Once Skydance has full control, the company will infuse $1.5 billion into Paramount to create stability during the transition. Ellison also stated that his team had already identified more than $2 billion in cost-savings annually, including over $1 billion in the first year. Skydance also pledged to bring a “modernized infrastructure offering scalability and ingenuity,” which is good news for Paramount+, which currently competes with streaming giants Netflix and Disney+.

While the merger looks like a win-win, there could be trouble brewing with shareholders. In the deal, nonvoting Class B shareholders would receive $15 a share in cash for up to 48% of their stock. Holders of the voting Class A stock would get $23 a share. However, Class B holders will not be given a vote in the upcoming deal, which could lead to litigation, as Class A shareholders will be incentivized by the higher purchase premium. This consideration inequality could then mean a disparity in representation, as Class B shareholders own over 90% of the company.

Paramount Global still has over 40 days to shop around for other bidders. If a better offer is selected, Paramount will have to pay Skydance a $400 million “breakup fee,” Ellison also revealed.

However, updates will most likely not be revealed in the next month, as according to Paramount, it “does not intend to disclose developments with respect to the go-shop process unless and until it determines such disclosure is appropriate or is otherwise required.”

So… we wait!

Laurén Alexa's picture

Journalist, antique shop owner, aspiring gemologist—Laurén brings a diverse perspective to animation, where every frame reflects her varied passions.